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The Voter’s Speakeasy featuring unbiased reporting and insight into life at Project Vote Smart from our staff, interns, and volunteers.

Show Me the Money!

2008 March 10 - Tucson


Rachel Buchanan, Project Vote Smart Intern Reporter

Money and politics tend to go hand in hand, but most of us have no idea exactly what goes on behind the campaigns and into the confusing world of finances. Stay confused no longer because here are some easy tips to accessing financial information regarding your favorite politicians.The Project Vote Smart website is the first stop. We have financial information just a click away and our data is, of course, represented by non-profit, non-partisan organizations. General help to understanding things like the Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act of 2002, who can contribute, spending limits, and Political Action Committees can be found in our Government 101 section under Campaign Finance. This section is easy to comprehend and explains political jargon like "soft money" and puzzling bans that outlaw contributions to national parties, but permit up to $10,000 in soft money contributions to state and local parties. This section also explains the restrictions behind campaign expenditures and obscure amendments like the "Millionaire's Amendment", which expands contribution limits for candidates who face wealthy opponents. In addition, there is a clearly organized chart that lays out exactly who can give how much money, and when, to a particular campaign.

To go a little deeper, our website also allows the public to access campaign finance data for congress, presidents, governors, and state legislators. By simply selecting a state, political position, and particular politician, financial data and visual graphs and charts for anyone of your choice is at the convenience ...

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